Paramore frontwoman Hayley Williams continues her venture into solo stardom with a new single. (One of her most highly anticipated and beloved to date.)
That Newfound Solo Magic
Surprise, this new single is a cover! If the non-American English spelling of “colour” wasn’t a dead giveaway, Hayley Williams did not write this song. The Mississippi-born, Nashville-raised star is no stranger to cover songs, but rarely do they get a proper studio release. “Colour Me In” is by Broadcast.
Luckily, after some begging from fans across the globe, Hayley Williams gave it the attention it deserves. The exuberant singer-songwriter has covered the song two monumental times. The first was on Instagram Live. The intimate setting from within her Nashville home illuminated the lyrics of this melancholy track. It also gave further insight into the power behind Hayley Williams’ vocals in a stripped down setting.
In Paramore, Williams is constantly belting, but that’s pop punk for you. As a soloist, she is much more laid back and vulnerable. Lyrically and musically, Hayley Williams puts on a storyteller persona nowadays. Her artistry is alternative and personal, but still maintains a pop rock edge.
“Colour Me In” was released by Broadcast in 2003 as a single. Fans loved her rendition of it, though. Because of that, she took the adored cover song to an event. As part of a voter registration effort during the 2020 Presidential Election, artists banded together. The event, aptly titled Good Music To Avert The Collapse of American Democracy, showcased Williams singing “Colour Me In” live.
Exposing Another Layer of Hayley Williams On “Colour Me In”
“I really love Broadcast. It was hard to choose which song of theirs I wanted to cover, but I feel like this one hits me in a sweet spot […] I recorded this days before lockdown last year and it’s just been floating around in the ether. So happy it’s got a place to land now. Enjoy,” she had said before her performance. Now, it has an even larger life as an official single release.
This song marks Hayley Williams first foray into a non-album release. The star is always working toward a larger piece of music. In 2020, when the critically-acclaimed performer went solo, she released a cohesive album. The world-renowned record, Petals for Armor, showcased a side to the star we had yet to meet.
The level of vulnerability she expresses through her music and lyrics is mesmerizing to fans both new and old. Now, with “Colour Me In,” she’s following that solo project up – and she did it well. “Colour Me In” is simple but effective, alternative and haunting, and expresses genuine musicality. She took a song and played it like it was nothing, while effortlessly making it her own solo track.
At just two minutes long, “Colour Me In” is twinkling and sweet. It tells a heart wrenching story right from the get-go. We love that, though. Could Hayley Williams have released this cover prior to her solo career? Probably. Would it have resonated as profoundly? We don’t think so. This era of Hayley Williams is earnest and raw, regardless of the genre box the industry wants to put her in.